Dr. Dianne Saxe
Climate, energy, environment, climate crisis, mitigation and adaptation, individual footprints, sustainable finance, law, policy, liability, municipalities.
Dr. Dianne Saxe is one of Canada’s most respected environmental lawyers, and was the Environmental Commissioner of Ontario 2015 to 2019. She was appointed unanimously by all MPPs to report to the Legislature on Ontario’s environmental, energy, and climate performance, and to be the guardian of the Environmental Bill of Rights. Now heading Saxe Facts, a business providing strategic advice and presentations on climate, energy, and environment. SaxeFacts.com
what's at stake, and what we can do about it, by changing what we eat, how we grow it, and how much of it we throw away. Minutes 23 to 28
Interview on The Agenda
A quick shoutout on voting for carbon pricing in the Canadian election
CBC Metro Morning, April 2, 2019Radio/Podcast
The Environment Commissioner of Ontario is kaput. The last Commissioner to hold the post -- Environmental lawyer Dianne Saxe -- talks about the role of an independent watchdog to help keep the Government honest in a very tough time for climate and the environment
Living Underwater, October 15, 2019Print
Jewish essays and art about coping with the #ClimateCrisis, a beautiful, thoughtful zine. It includes my article about what we can learn about the #ClimateCrisis from the ancient story of Pharaoh and the 10 plagues.
Ford Fallout: “I’m dreading the day my grandchildren look at me and ask, ‘Why did you let this happen to us?’”
Toronto Life, December 18, 2019Print
As the Environmental Commissioner of Ontario, I was always treated with respect until September 2018, when I delivered a report documenting the destructive effects of the Ford government’s climate actions. Soon afterwards, the province passed special legislation to abolish my office, break the contract all MPPs had unanimously made with me and crush my employees’ union. Twelve of us lost our jobs, but Ontario has lost much more.
Greenwashing: the Ford government climate plan
Toronto Star, November 29, 2019Print
Until the 2018 election, Ontario was a climate leader. Now it is an obstacle to climate action, and a perfect example of what gets people out in the streets demanding change. The greenwashing in the Ford government's Environment Plan shows why
Climate crisis puts corporate boards on the hot seat
Toronto Star, August 25, 2019Print
Corporate boards face stringent new disclosure requirements, and the growing possibility of civil lawsuits for climate damage
Climate damage: will fossil fuel producers have to pay? (Part 1 of 4)
Lawyers Daily, December 20, 2019Online
The climate crisis is already causing large financial losses, and much more is ahead. Most of the fossil fuels that are driving this crisis have been produced and sold by 103 companies, the Carbon Majors. Can they be made to pay for the resulting damage? This four part series examines how.
10 principles to guide the transition to a green economy
Open Canada, September 16, 2019Online
Given the climate emergency, can Canadians overcome the political obstacles to dramatically reducing their dependence on fossil fuels? Former environmental commissioner Dianne Saxe provides a roadmap to do it.
Ontario's former environment watchdog slams Doug Ford's government
Dr. Dianne Saxe is one of Canada’s most respected environmental lawyers, with 40+ years’ unparalleled experience writing, interpreting, and litigating Ontario’s energy and environmental laws. An experienced team leader with substantial board experience; a skilled communicator with broad strategic vision. Hard-won expertise in government relations, corporate governance and public consultation. A can-do person always striving to make a difference. Now heading Saxe Facts, a business providing strategic advice and presentations on climate, energy and environment.
Leadership training and experience: 2015 to 2019, Dr. Dianne Saxe was the Environmental Commissioner of Ontario. She was appointed unanimously by all MPPs to report to the Legislature on Ontario’s environmental, energy and climate performance, and to be the guardian of the Environmental Bill of Rights. During her term, she improved the effectiveness of the Environmental Bill of Rights, increased public understanding of the urgency of climate change, and delivered 17 reports on environment, energy and climate.
Board Experience: More than 20 years’ experience on public and private boards, including Draxis board and audit committee (public issuer). Non-profit organizations included Secretary of Evergreen, a $10 million/year environmental charity; president and chair of the Windshare renewable energy cooperative; Ontario Bar Association Investment Committee. Extensive professional assistance to boards and board members, especially on issues of personal and environmental liability. Certified “Board-Ready” by Women in Capital Markets. Author: Environmental Protection - Guidance & Recommendations for Boardroom Practice. Canadian Board Diversity Council Get on Board, Intermediate program.
Business Experience: 25 years running her own small business, a highly regarded environmental law boutique. A Certified Environmental Law Specialist, Commissioner Saxe was recognized by all major legal rating services, including acknowledgement as one of the world’s top 25 environmental lawyers by Best of the Best, 2008 and as Best Lawyers’ first Environmental Lawyer of the Year for Toronto.
Professional Qualifications: Ph.D. in Law, Osgoode Hall Law School, 1991. Ontario Bar, 1976. LL.B., Osgoode Hall Law School, 1974. Mediator.
Awards: Toronto’s first Environmental Lawyer of the Year, selected by Best Lawyers. One of the world’s top 25 environmental lawyers, according to Best of the Best, 2008. Recognized by Lexpert, Who’s Who Legal, Chambers, Martindale Hubble and other rating agencies. Osgoode Hall Alumni Gold Key for Achievement; Ontario Bar Association Distinguished Service Award.